Reasoning With the Baby I Never Plan to Have
Know that it takes one thousand days to detox
and my weekly trip to the winery is unavoidable.
Know that big heads run in my family, that a baby’s head
makes up 25 percent of its length, that Einstein’s brain
was 15 percent wider than normal and you would definitely be
smarter than Einstein, that Americans are over-eaters,
that you would probably be obese because my cat is obese,
and because I eat when I’m upset.
Know that aliens prefer to abduct babies at night,
that I like to sleep with the windows open,
that aliens run in our family, that people say kids grow up
too fast these days. Know that girls have quicker hearts,
boys blink less, that unlike other humans, identical twins
have the same exact scent, that babies are born with
100 extra bones, and I can’t decide which one of those facts
freaks me out more. Know that people live better
without food than sleep, that babies don’t understand
the concept of night and day, that I have to go to bed
by 8 o’clock or I’m no good, that high levels of
testosterone make you feel pleasure from inflicting pain,
that testosterone runs in our family. Know that anger
increases people’s desire to possess things,
and I can barely share a bottle of wine, that
I’m known to hide it before company arrives.
Know that having you would eat at least 20 percent
of my salary, that by not having you, I can avoid the wage gap,
and though people see my empty womb as proof of lesbianism,
or alienism, I’m okay with it. Know that you’d start listening
to my voice in the womb, and I can’t sing worth a damn.
Know that when you die, hearing is the last sense to go.
That if your heart had stopped before your brain,
you might have heard me saying your name.
About the Author: Bryanna Licciardi has received her MFA in poetry and is currently pursuing a PhD in Literacy Studies. Her work appears in such journals as Poetry Quarterly, Blazevox, Dual Coast, Dos Passos, Cleaver Magazine, and Adirondack Review. You can read more about her at here.